Our Wedding - The Wedding Deck on top of Aspen Mountain
11th September
written by bob

Sunday, August 31…

Katherine stayed with the girls and Gerry and I hung out until 2am-ish. Because we had a room at the Little Nell tonight, I had to pack all my stuff so that Katherine could stop by in the morning while all the guys were golfing. I didn’t want to get up early this morning but I wanted to do something with all my groomsmen the day of the wedding. I wasn’t really nervous, at least, that I could tell however I didn’t have much of an appetite.

So I trekked out the door at 7:45am and over to the North of Nell where I was meeting all the other guys. Twelve of us golfed this morning and we had a really good time. I think we had cracked our beers open by the second hole but I had no intention of having too many. I wanted to be very sober for my wedding. Word has it that you won’t remember much of the day as you are so busy with everything going on and talk with and thanking people for coming. We finished golf around 1:30pm. Regardless of which of the 3 teams we had today thinks they won, my 4-some won – it was MY day! Haha. And, the hockey stick putters were a hit. Not only did we have fun using them but other golfers were very interested in obtaining one as well and asked where to buy one. For those interested – http://www.hockeystickputters.com. They are becoming extremely popular so I wouldn’t be surprised if you find them in your local NHL team’s Pro Shop at the arena.

Despite my lack of appetite, I figured it would be best to eat something prior to my wedding. Gerry, Bill, and I grabbed a quick lunch at Zane’s. I like Zane’s – it’s a small little bar that is sub-street level and had great wings! I would recommend them for anyone who gets a chance to visit Aspen. It’s now 2:15pm and because Katherine and I had to move our clothes and things to the Little Nell, I need to find out what room we have and start getting dressed. All of our things are in different rooms – my tux in my mom’s room and the rest of our things are in the bridesmaids’ room. I’m starting to get a little frantic at this point. I needed my stuff to get ready and I just spoke with Katherine and she has her hair and make-up complete and also just finished writing her vows! Oh man, no pressure now since she is done and I still haven’t even started my vows yet. Crap! And to be honest, I began to panic a bit now (and curse) since I didn’t figure I would have the time to write my vow. I mean really, how was I going to accomplish writing my vows when I’m golfing 18 holes? The ceremony was at 6pm and the guys and I had to head over the gondola at 4:15pm to be at the top of Aspen Mountain around 5pm for pictures…AND…it was 2:40pm NOW! (More cursing.)

Scott helped me carry my stuff over to the Little Nell and went back to get his stuff. All the groomsmen were coming over to get dressed in my room and we were leaving from there. I was alone for the first time today. I decided to sit down and write my vow at this point. I fired up the laptop and went to Google to search for “traditional wedding vows”. There I found was I was looking for; some ideas about how to write vows. I remember laying in bed a week ago and Katherine and I discussing what to write for vows. She said, “Just speak to me from your heart and say what you feel.” Once I completed the first sentence and how I wanted it phrased, I was off and running. Everything just flowed. Of course I had a bit of editing to do but overall, I was happy with what I wrote.

Shower and shave time since its 3:30pm. The guys started arriving and once dressed walked to the gondola and proceeded up the mountain. For those who have never been on Aspen Mountain, it’s an 18 minute ride (2.5 miles) up the mountain to get to the top. During the ride is where I found out my brother doesn’t do well with heights! He wouldn’t look out the windows for anything and just stared at the jacket buttons on one of my other groomsmen. We arrived at the top of the mountain and…what a view, just as I had remembered it from February although a lot let snow! I asked a Scott and Ryan to run over to the Aspen Mountain Club and see if our photographer, Alan, was finished photographing the ladies. Katherine was still upstairs and outside so I stayed put at the gondola drop off. Once given the all clear, the guys and I went into the bar area and grabbed a quick cold beer for a last minute thirst quencher. Alan found us in the bar and we all headed out by the wedding deck for our 20 minute photo session.

Now complete, we went back inside to the bar as guests started arriving. I ask a few of my groomsmen to usher guests to their seats and hang out with my best man, Brent Selman, in the bar and finish our beers. As the last of our guests are seated Sheri, our incredible wedding coordinator (high recommendations all around for her), herds me and the guys to the front of the Club. There, I see my mom and Alan grabs us for a quick mother-son photo opp along with a couple of me just leaning against a wooden column looking out over the gondola. The bridesmaids arrive and everyone lines up to headed to the Wedding deck for the ceremony. Michael, our Officiant, and I walk first and the rest of the wedding party followed coming down the steps and taking their place respectively. Michael and I stand there and watch each pair come down and converse with some small chat. Basically, I tell him that as Katherine makes her way to the bottom of the stairs, I will go over and take her hand, turn, and bring her back where will be stand to be married in front of all our guests.

As the last couple, Carrie and Ryan were making their way down to the deck, in my peripheral vision I notice Katherine coming out and stopping behind a large evergreen tree to conceal her from view. “It’s time,” I think to myself and just at that second Katherine comes walking out from behind that tree and I see her for the first time. She looks unbelievable! I expected her to look good BUT honestly, she was radiant; just stunning! I could feel the tears starting to well up in my eyes. I fought hard to hold them back! The only thing I could think of at that moment was I had better not lose it since I still had vows to make it though! Katherine took her time and slowly walked to me on the wedding deck as our guests stood to admire and snap photos. Once our eyes met we were locked on one another. It was absolutely amazing! As my bride approached the last step I walked over to her, took her hand, told her see looked incredible, and we returned to Michael taking our place in front of him.

Our 20 minute ceremony included a Cherokee reading, a poem by George Eliot, our intentions for marriage, vows, exchange of rings, and the pouring of our Unity sand. We are pronounced “Husband & Wife” and I kiss my beautiful bride. We walk back towards the Club and stop to allow guests to head into the Club for drinks and hors d’ouerves. Alan does his thing for the next 30 minutes photographing Katherine and I with family and the wedding party. After a few last minute photos of her and I, we stroll hand in hand up to the Club for our formal introduction as a married couple. Let the PARTY begin!

Our master of ceremonies, Mike Leopold, did an awesome job at dinner keeping things moving and interesting with speeches from the wedding party, our families, and a few friends. From the time I arrived at the top of mountain, the day had just been perfect! Even during the ceremony there was a little bit of rain and then the sun beamed back down upon us. Honestly, the only worry I had was the weather and I’m so thankful that it held off during the ceremony. I don’t think you can ever predict the weather in the mountains but the day was great; despite the hour long shower we received earlier in the day around 2pm. Dinner was spectacular as we ate grilled Elk Loin and a crusted Ruby Trout. Dancing, cake cutting, and plenty of drinking ensued and everyone looked like they were really having a great time. The Little Nell was even so kind to allow everyone to continue dancing and having fun 30 minutes after our original gondola departure time of 10:30pm.

With the evening winding down, Sheri gathered up all of our bags, gifts, champagne flutes, etc that Katherine and I had and as one of the last people on the mountain, we jumped in a gondola for our 18 minute ride down the mountain. Wow…we finally had some time to ourselves, completely alone in the dark of night. We reflected on a lot of what happened during the ceremony, dinner, and reception. What an amazing day! It really couldn’t have been more perfect!

We partied with most of our guests a bit more in the bridesmaids’ condo before retiring for the remainder of the evening to our quiet “Town Suite” at the Little Nell.

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